CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The South Carolina Task Force 3 participated in a simulation to test the team’s ability in responding to major storm events and urban search and recovery.

On Saturday, SCTF3 engaged in “Operational Readiness” to evaluate the team’s preparedness for adverse events.

The team is composed of members of the Charleston, St. Andrews, North Charleston, and Summerville Fire Departments in addition to James Island Public Safety.

“We have about 35 members participating in this ‘Operational Readiness’ exercise,” said Kyle Bishop, SCTF3 Commander. “It’s done annually by SLED to see if we’re still a deployable team while also helping us manage grant money.”

Bishop mentions that the grant money helps in purchasing equipment, training, and overall skill development for the team.

The Operational Readiness simulation not only tests the team’s skills but also allows Lowcountry residents to see what SCTF3 is capable of.

“So any storm events, hurricanes, structural collapse, any technical hazards that exceed the realm of normal fire department operations, this team is capable of handling [it].”

In Saturday’s exercise, a three-story collapsed parking garage was assembled for the team to demonstrate rescuing victims trapped under and on top of debris.

Though SC TF III has been deployed as a regional team, the team has assisted in the areas of Georgetown, Midlands, and Colleton County.

“After this training, SLED is going to do an evaluation of us to determine whether or not we can do what we say we can do,” Bishop said.

What’s next for SCTF3 is a decision to be made by SLED to determine if the team is at deployable status.